The thing to keep in mind about sports games is that the newest ones are generally the best. The newest version is typically the best, and is more than likely the version whoever you're giving it to probably wants. There are some exceptions, of course, but this is generally true. Just keep in mind that the current sports titles are generally dated "next" year, so 2013's games are all 2014, or 14, or 2K14.
Fight Night Round 2 was one of our favorite Xbox games of 2005 so Round 3 had some pretty high expectations to meet. Amazingly, EA has delivered a boxing experience that easily surpasses everything that Round 2 had to offer. The gameplay is absolutely phenomenal and the graphics on the Xbox 360 are amazing. Not only is this the best boxing game ever but it is also one of the best Xbox 360 games available even now three years after it was released.
The battle between EA Sports' FIFA Soccer and Konami's Pro Evolution Soccer series was tighter than ever this year, and we truly feel that you can't go wrong either way. FIFA 14 and Pro Evo 2014 both play exceptionally well out on the field and have fantastic presentation. FIFA has the edge in licenses - don't expect to see MLS teams in Pro Evo, for example - so you might want to check if the teams you want to play as are available before you make a decision on which one to buy.
Tiger Woods PGA Tour 14 is another great entry in the series. The gameplay is better than ever and the feature set has filled out nicely by offering all 4 majors for the first time ever, the Legends of the Majors mode is a step up from the Tiger Legacy mode last year, and you can actually play on the LPGA Tour this time around as well. You can even golf at night with glow in the dark balls! It is all very cool.
In case you didn't know, EA's NHL series is crazy good. So good, in fact, that its only competition decided to pack it in and not even release an Xbox 360 / PS3 version in 2010. Seems like a wise decision, because NHL 11 is even better than last year's already great game. It packs more features, better presentation, tighter gameplay, and is more accessible than ever before.
NBA 2K11 was a gushy love letter to Michael Jordan. NBA 2K12 was an homage to all of the great NBA players of the past. NBA 2K13 was a tribute to the classic teams of the past. And NBA 2K14 is all about LeBron James. Okay, so maybe that mode is a step back from years past, but the gameplay and presentation are definitely better than ever here. This is the best basketball game, and possibly the best sports game overall.
2K Sports' first WWE title is pretty much just the same game THQ would have produced this year with the 2K logo slapped on it, but that doesn't mean it isn't good. The gameplay is solid, the presentation is excellent, and the addition of the 30 Years of WrestleMania mode, along with all of the playable superstars of the past it brings, is pretty phenomenal. The special Undertake-themed modes are very cool as well.
Madden 13 makes some radical gameplay changes to the franchise for the first time in several years. A new passing system, receiver awareness, new physics, better A.I. for blocking, and more all make this the most realistic playing Madden yet. The new Connected Careers mode also combines all of the franchise and other modes into one large, connected, RPG-style mode that gives the old modes a fresh feel. All in all, Madden NFL 13 is the best Madden yet.
EA Sports MMA is a bit of a role reversal for Electronic Arts. Usually EA is the company with the big licenses, which make it the 800-pound gorilla every other publisher is chasing. Not so when it comes to mixed-martial-arts. THQ has the big license (UFC) and the established street cred, and EA is the scrappy newcomer trying to break into the genre. After spending several days with EA's offering, I think THQ had better watch its back. EA Sports MMA is the real deal.
NCAA Football 14 is easily the best playing college football game out on the field and offers great presentation to boot. The features list isn't a huge jump from years past, but the actual gameplay is a definite step up.
Crazy, simple, fast, fun – these are just a few good ways to describe The BIGS 2. It is like a fan edit of your favorite movie that just shows the good parts. It is a dessert with a mound of frosting and a tiny sliver of cake. It is an all Rush mixtape collection (Fanboys reference +1). The BIGS 2 is baseball broken down into the best parts – hitting and pitching and chasing down crazy stats. And it is the best baseball game the Xbox 360 has to offer. Find out all of the details here in our full review.